A poet posed this question. What's a dream deferred?
Sitting at a call center in my cubicle feeling trapped in mediocrity. Filled with aspirations and ideas that could change the world, but as my next call was auto-answered I was reminded of my reality.
The unfiltered truth was I hated life, because I knew I was supposed to be doing something... SIGNIFICANT. Everyday I would reflect on my on my previous mindset, and decision making. “How did I get here?” When did answering phones for a salary that, yes kept me out of absolute poverty but only ushered me into a life of quiet desperation living in relative poverty, become an option?When exactly did I stop pursuing the BIG dreams and passions of my childhood?
After much self discovery I realized once again my potential. Visionary. Philanthropist. Chief Executive Officer. Social Entrepreneur. These titles were symbolic of callings deep within me, but as another call was auto-answered, it was clear my life’s trajectory was not trending upward at the pace I desired or needed it to, in order to make these dream titles my reality.
I wished for a BETTER START. Yall I needed a Better Start. A better start with a better perspective on the importance of education. A better start with a better understanding of how to use and grow money. A better start with more exposure to future career possibilities that were connected to my passions and skill sets. A better start where I understood myself and others intimately to become the great leader it requires to foster the change I want in the world.
My quest for upward social mobility sent me on a reading binge. During this binge, I read self-help books like Lisa Nichols, Abundant Life, Steve Harvey’s, Act Like a Success Think Like a Success, & Napoleon Hill’s, Think and Grow Rich. These books inspired me to take action, and I came away with a new life slogan. A slogan that makes lifelong learning a necessity. A slogan that makes action a priority.
I WANT TO BE GREAT TOO.
I decided at all cost to start playing big in life, but the first step was to recognize and accept my opportunities for development. Academically I was unproven, socially I was awkward, and financially I was illiterate.
My next step was to understand my past to pinpoint why I had arrived into adulthood as this person. After years of gathering information and self-discovery I realized my struggle with upward social mobility as an adult was connected to my child and youth development.
I came away with an in-depth understanding of my own path which will greatly aid me in the work I’ve committed my talents to now, via the Better Start Foundation.
I now understand the odds children like me are up against, being born into families with low socioeconomic status- which increases their likelihood of adverse childhood experiences. This better start I envision now, would had propelled me and will drive the children Better Start Foundation will serve to earlier paths of greatness.
I am determined to give children, with similar upbringings as me, access to people, resources, and solutions to ignite their upward social mobility so in 2016 I decided to start the Better Start Foundation, a children's foundation, whose mission is to engage people, connect resources, and inspire solutions to ignite the upward social mobility of children and youth.
There are one too many low skill/low wage workers who have the potential and intellect to pursue their passions and play big in life but are caught up in a vicious cycle of working for basic survival that it becomes close to impossible to pursue their dreams.
There is a cashier clocking in today who could be a CEO. A single mother making the most of public housing when she could be a property owner. There is also an inmate waking up in a cell, who could have been a great politician.
The disparity between children growing up in different social classes is unsettling to me and Better Start Foundation is here to change that. There are thousands of children who will grow up with the disadvantages of low socioecnomic status and without these disadvantages being intentionally combatted through holistic child and youth development they will, like I once was, wake up daily as an adult frustrated with the direction and status of their lives.
Depleted financially, spiritually, emotionally, and mentally, with no understanding of what to do to improve these areas can leave a very helpless feeling. The depression, anger, and confusion sets in and because of inadequate mental and physiological coping mechanisms most face challenges to build social and professional support networks, in completing higher education, and avoiding life decisions that further promote the low socioeconomic status that plagued us at birth.
So then one day we find ourselves doing work that disrespects our intellect when what we needed all along was.....
THE GREEN LIGHT TO BE GREAT.
My belief is that young people, no matter where they come from, can pursue their passions,be successful, and help build stronger, wealthier communities.
My vision for Better Start Foundation is to ensure that every child enters adulthood prepared to reach their life’s full potential.
Better Start Foundation is preparing for take off, and infrastructure will be set up beginning with the end in mind. It's being designed to exist 100 years from now.
The vision is a great one, but without the help of people like you, who have interest in impacting the lives of children living in communities where there is untapped potential... the vision will be impossible to realize.
A poet poised the question?
So What happens to a dream deferred? Maybe it sags like a heavy load
Or does it explode?
Join BSF and be a green light for greatness, for children and youth.
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